OG Post: March 16th, 2017
Edinburgh Day4: (Wednesday) It all catches up to you. Since landing on Sunday and taking a cab from the airport we haven’t used another mode of transportation other than walking. No tram, bus, cab or anything else. This means I’ve been averaging about 300% of my daily exercise/move goals on my tracker. Wednesday morning this all caught up to me. I woke and tried to get out of bed at 6:30 AM local time and I just couldn’t so I reset my alarms for another hour and finally got up right before 8 AM. Even still I got ready and to work before 9 AM. It was a much slower walk, not just because I was more tired but also because the streets were busier. After struggling to get going the first hour I headed over to Starbucks here in Quartermile for a coffee. We have a good coffee machine here in the office but sometimes you just want what you are familiar with. The downside is they don’t have the Starbucks cold brew here in Edinburgh. :/ or at least the Starbucks I went to doesn't.
Anyways work progressed and Red got out and about I was getting texts from her adventures all day. It began approaching the end of the day and I texted Red to see if she was meeting me at work or if I was meeting her out in the town. Our plan was to go to The Elephant House and The Tartan Weaving Mill after work. She wrote back that she was on her way. The walk is a 15 - 20-minute walk so when 30 minutes later she hadn’t shown up I get this text that said, “Somehow I’m at the Elephant House, meet me here?” I’m proud of her, despite her difficulties in navigating around she has somehow gone out every day an not gotten lost yet. This time her getting lost ended up getting her to our eventual destination anyways.
So I left work and headed over to meet her at the Elephant House. So for those of you who are not familiar with the Elephant House, this is the coffee shop who’s tagline is, “The Birthplace of Harry Potter.” While this isn’t necessarily true because the Harry Potter was first formed on a train from Manchester to Kings Cross and the first three chapters had been written by the time JK Rowling moved to Edinburgh. However, it was one of the two coffee shops directly mentioned in JK Rowling’s biography when she talked about the places she would sit at and write for hours. So it’s kind of a holy place for those of us who are complete geeks for the Wizarding World. It was a very cool place as it wasn’t just a coffee shop but also a bar and a restaurant. I had a cappuccino and a slice of raspberry and white chocolate cheesecake. Red had a mocha and shortbread cookie. Before we left I stopped at the restroom which was entirely graffitied by customers who stopped in to sign their name and write Harry Potter quotes, and general appreciation for JK Rowling’s writing.
When we left we walked from the Elephant House towards the Royal Mile and the Tartan Weaving Mill. That area is beautiful. Red showed me some of the little shops where she had gone that day to pick up souvenirs. On the way up the castle, we reached the Castle Esplanade where they perform the Military Tattoo right around sunset. For those not familiar that term comes from the early 17th-century Dutch phrase doe den tap toe ("turn off the tap"), a signal sounded by drummers or trumpeters to instruct innkeepers near military garrisons to stop serving beer and for soldiers to return to their barracks. The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo these days is a gigantic yearly music and entertainment show. Performers from over 48 countries have taken part in the Tattoo, and around 30 percent of the 220,000 audiences each year are from overseas. Yet another reason I want to come to visit Edinburgh in August for the City Festival. I’ll make it here for that one year.
After we stopped to take a few pictures we headed into the Old Town Tartan Weaving Mill. This is the wool weaving textile mill that has been in operation since 1437. Before that, it was the Castle Hill reservoir, the main water supply for the Castle residents. It runs down five floors straight into the hill. Yeah, that’s an impressive business. We got in and only had like 10 minutes left to look around before they closed. So we headed straight down to the bottom floor where the textile machines where. While there Red and I picked up some wool scarfs and she got a cashmere pashmina. Red was going to return the next day to explore more when she had more time.
After that, we walked back down the Royal Mile and looped around by The Hub. They were obviously setting it up for some show because they had all the spotlights out and it lit up with a very beautiful pink light. At this point, all the walking for the past three days started to catch up with me so we went back to the hotel and I went to the bathtub. Did I mention that our hotel has a porcelain bathtub that I can “almost” fit in? Along with color changing mood lighting in the bathroom? Yeah, it’s like that.
We decided afterward that we where not going to go back out. We grabbed a few Whiskey and Cokes for me and a Vodka Tonic for Red and some pizza and chilled in the hotel room gathering our strength for the adventures to come while watching Rick and Morty on my laptop. (It’s on Netflix overhere!)